Peter Moylan came back incredibly strong after undergoing Tommy John elbow surgery in 2008, posting a 2.84 ERA in 2009 and a 2.94 ERA last season, but now he’s facing the possibility of another extended stay on the sidelines thanks to a bulging disk in his back.
David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that Moylan hopes to avoid going under the knife for what would be his third back surgery following operations in 2001 and 2003, instead getting an epidural injection and a stint on the disabled list.
Moylan has quietly been one of the best relievers in baseball since debuting in 2006 as a 27-year-old rookie, posting a 2.91 ERA with 201 strikeouts in 252 innings while allowing just 13 homers and a .236 opponents’ batting average.
The White Sox have reportedly picked up first baseman Yonder Alonso from the Indians, according to Stadium. The return for Alonso is expected to be nothing more flashy than a “fringe prospect,” though the minutiae of the deal is still pending a formal announcement from both teams.
Alonso, 31, inked a two-year deal with the Indians during the 2017 offseason. His first campaign with the club yielded a modest .250/.317/.421 batting line, 23 home runs, .738 OPS and 0.7 fWAR in 574 PA. The real boon for the White Sox may not be a passable veteran bat, however, but something more intangible — like Alonso’s clout with his brother-in-law and highly-coveted free agent slugger, Manny Machado.
While Alonso’s 2018 output represented a significant decline from the career-best numbers he posted in 2017, he’s still a solid contributor at the plate and, more importantly, slated to remain under team control for the next two years with just $8 million owed in 2019 and a $9 million option in 2020. As MLB.com’s Anthony Castrovince notes, the $17 million the Indians just erased from their payroll should give them enough room to accommodate the contracts for right-handers Trevor Bauer and Corey Kluber — a bonus regardless of what they happen to get in the trade.